Telepsychotherapy for the Treatment of Adolescents With Trichotillomania

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Brief Title

Telepsychotherapy for the Treatment of Adolescents With Trichotillomania

Official Title

Telepsychotherapy for the Treatment of Adolescents With Trichotillomania

Brief Summary

      The primary purpose of the current study is to evaluate the effectiveness of providing
      treatment for adolescents with trichotillomania through the use of telehealth. Parent or
      legal guardians' psychological flexibility scores will be assessed to determine if their
      levels of flexibility potentially moderate treatment outcomes.

      The study will test the following hypotheses:

      Hypothesis 1: Telepsychotherapy will result in significantly better trichotillomania symptom
      outcomes for adolescents than a waitlist control condition.

      Hypothesis 2: Telepsychotherapy will result in significantly better psychological flexibility
      outcomes for adolescents than a waitlist control condition.

      Hypothesis 3: Telepsychotherapy will result in significantly better overall wellbeing
      outcomes for adolescents than a waitlist control condition.

      Hypothesis 4: Within-group changes (that include both conditions following treatment) will be
      significant from pre-treatment to post-treatment and will not significantly differ from
      post-treatment at 3, 6, and 12-month follow-up.

Detailed Description

      The investigators of this study plan to recruit 60 participants, 30 adolescents and 30
      parents or legal guardians. This number will provide adequate power (0.70) to detect a large
      effect size (d=.81). All portions of this study will be completed online using
      teleconferencing software, Zoom (similar to Skype).

      Participants will be randomized into either a treatment or waitlist control group. All
      participants will receive treatment, however, those in the waitlist group will wait 12 weeks
      before beginning treatment. Treatment will consist of 10, 50 minute sessions with up to six
      short (10-15 minute) booster sessions during a three-month period following treatment.
      Participants and parents/guardians will complete full assessment batteries at intake,
      post-waitlist (only those in the waitlist condition), post-treatment, and 3, 6, and 12 months
      following treatment. Moreover, adolescent participants will be asked to track their daily
      pulling behavior each day while in treatment(with parent/guardian help if desired). This will
      be done through the use of daily text message reminders using to the
      parent/guardian that will include a link to the short (less then 5 minute) Qualtrics survey.
      All treatment sessions will take place online using video conferencing software (i.e., Zoom).

      Parents/guardians will be invited to participate in the final 10 minutes of each session.
      This will allow for the adolescent to review what they have learned and also allow the
      parent/guardian to be involved in the fulfillment of treatment goals and to assist with
      skill-building throughout the week. Parents will also be give a short (1/2 to 1 page) handout
      following each session that will explain what was taught and how they can best help the
      participant make progress. Parents will also be asked to complete a short measure of
      psychological flexibility at intake, post-waitlist (only when applicable), post-treatment,
      and 3, 6, and 12-months following treatment.

Study Type


Primary Outcome

Trichotillomania Scale for Children-Chile and Parent Versions (TSC-C & TSC-p)

Secondary Outcome

 Acceptance and Fusion Questionnaire for Youth (AFQ-Y8)




Acceptance and Commitment Therapy Enhanced Behavior Therapy (AEBT)

Study Arms / Comparison Groups

Description:  This arm will begin treatment immediately after completing the initial intake assessment.


* Includes publications given by the data provider as well as publications identified by National Clinical Trials Identifier (NCT ID) in Medline.

Recruitment Information

Recruitment Status


Estimated Enrollment


Start Date

August 6, 2018

Completion Date

August 5, 2020

Primary Completion Date

August 5, 2020

Eligibility Criteria

        Inclusion Criteria:

          -  Meet DSM-5 criteria for trichotillomania.

          -  Seeking treatment primarily for trichotillomania-related concerns.

          -  12-17 years old.

          -  Reside in Utah.

          -  Speak fluent English.


          -  Must be fluent English speaker.

        Exclusion Criteria:

          -  Currently receiving psychotherapy.

          -  Started or changed psychotropic medication in the past 30 days.

          -  Planning to start or change psychotropic medication during the course of the current

          -  Completed high school.




12 Years - 17 Years

Accepts Healthy Volunteers



Michael P Twohig, PhD, 435-797-8303, [email protected]

Location Countries

United States

Location Countries

United States

Administrative Informations



Organization ID


Responsible Party

Principal Investigator

Study Sponsor

Utah State University

Study Sponsor

Michael P Twohig, PhD, Principal Investigator, Utah State University

Verification Date

October 2018